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4.8.20 KPBS
"Could A Smart Ring Be An Early Warning System For The Coronavirus?"
As the coronavirus pandemic increasingly puts health care and other essential workers at risk of infection, UC San Diego researchers have joined a nationwide study looking into whether a wearable device could be an early warning system for people who are getting sick. When people go to the doctor they get their vital signs checked -- like temperature and pulse -- to help determine whether they are sick. But those signs only provide a snapshot of someone's health at a particular point in time. But what if someone's vital signs could be tracked and recorded 24/7?

4.7.20 U.S. News & World Report
"High-Tech Rings Are Tracking COVID-19 'Warning Signs'"
More than 12,000 people -- including thousands of health care workers in California and West Virginia -- are already wearing specially designed Oura rings that track their temperature, breathing, heart and activity. "Our first push is to get as many people involved as possible," said study leader Benjamin Smarr, a professor of data science and bioengineering at University of California, San Diego. "If enough people are involved, we can cover the whole country." But volunteers don't have to use a monitoring ring; they can also enter their symptoms on an online form.

4.7.20 WebMD
"High-Tech Rings Track COVID-19 'Warning Signs'"
Researchers are gathering data from thousands of Americans to create an "early warning system" that can identify people in the early stages of COVID-19. More than 12,000 people -- including thousands of health care workers in California and West Virginia -- are already wearing specially designed Oura rings that track their temperature, breathing, heart and activity. "Our first push is to get as many people involved as possible," said study leader Benjamin Smarr, a professor of data science and bioengineering at University of California, San Diego. "If enough people are involved,

4.7.20 International Business Times
"The novel Coronavirus is mutating slower than seasonal flu virus, as per data"
Viruses such as coronavirus usually affect humans by jumping from an animal to humans by mutating itself to match human cell process. Larger animals like us, humans take millions of years. The novel coronavirus is mutating slower than seasonal flu virus, points data. It is important to know how and which gene is mutating frequently so that it helps in designing drugs. Change on viruses is linked to the extent of outbreaks, changes in a location can tell us how many outbreaks is existing in a community, this helps in public health admins contain the outbreak.

4.7.20 Healthy Day
"High-Tech Rings Are Tracking COVID-19 'Warning Signs'"
Researchers are gathering data from thousands of Americans to create an "early warning system" that can identify people in the early stages of COVID-19. More than 12,000 people -- including thousands of health care workers in California and West Virginia -- are already wearing specially designed Oura rings that track their temperature, breathing, heart and activity. "Our first push is to get as many people involved as possible," said study leader Benjamin Smarr, a professor of data science and bioengineering at University of California, San Diego.

4.6.20 Seattle PI
"Here's how scientists are tracking the genetic evolution of COVID-19"
When you hear the term "evolutionary tree," you may think of Charles Darwin and the study of the relationships between different species over the span of millions of years. While the concept of an "evolutionary tree" originated in Darwin's "On the Origin of Species," one can apply this concept to anything that evolves, including viruses. Scientists can study the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 to learn more about how the genes of the virus function. It is also useful to make inferences about the spread of the virus around the world, and what type of vaccine may be most effective.

4.6.20 SF Gate
"Here's how scientists are tracking the genetic evolution of COVID-19"
When you hear the term "evolutionary tree," you may think of Charles Darwin and the study of the relationships between different species over the span of millions of years. While the concept of an "evolutionary tree" originated in Darwin's "On the Origin of Species," one can apply this concept to anything that evolves, including viruses. Scientists can study the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 to learn more about how the genes of the virus function. It is also useful to make inferences about the spread of the virus around the world, and what type of vaccine may be most effective.

4.6.20 Houston Chronicle
"Here's how scientists are tracking the genetic evolution of COVID-19"
(The Conversation is an independent and nonprofit source of news, analysis and commentary from academic experts.) Niema Moshiri, University of California San Diego

4.6.20 the New York Times
"To Study a Problem That's Everywhere, They're Getting Creative"
Three years ago, Dimitri Deheyn noticed intensely blue stringy shapes as he examined jellyfish samples through a microscope in his marine biology lab at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego. He assumed his lens was dirty, so he wiped it off with a special cloth. Then he tried taking it apart and airbrushing the optics. But the particles kept showing up. At first, Dr. Deheyn thought the culprit might be microplastics, tiny plastic bits that have invaded the oceans in the past decade.

4.3.20 KPBS
"UC San Diego Engineers, Doctors Upgrading, Testing Ventilators To Fight COVID-19"
Engineers and doctors across the country are racing to build and fix ventilators as the number of people with COVID-19 climbs. That includes engineers from UC San Diego's Jacobs School of Engineering and doctors from UC San Diego Medical Center. The testing is happening at a simulation lab on the UC San Diego campus. The facility is closed to outsiders, due to COVID-19 social distancing measures. But inside, one will find a team of doctors and engineers, equipped with personal protective gear, attaching ventilators to robotic lungs.

4.2.20 10 News San Diego
"UCSD researchers develop ventilator that can be made quickly, cheaply"
A team of researchers at UCSD have developed a simple ventilator that can be produced quickly and cheaply if needed. The project was overseen by Professor James Friend, who works in the School of Engineering and School of Medicine. The device is essentially an bag valve mask that has been outfitted with an automatic pumping arm, created with pieces made by 3D printers and waterjet cutters. "Whatever the simplest, quickest fastest way to produce the safest parts is," said Friend. "we choose that." He said the team developed, produced, tested and refined a prototype in 10 days.

3.28.20 the Washington Post
"Covid-19 health-care crisis could drive new developments in robotics, editorial says"
The covid-19 pandemic is pushing human bodies--and human ingenuity--to their limits. As patients flood emergency departments and health-care workers struggle to respond, an international group of robotic experts is making a case for some electronic intervention. In an editorial in the journal Science Robotics, they argue that covid-19 could drive new developments in robotics--and that the devices could help with more effective diagnosis, screening and patient care. If the thought of robotic assistants sounds futuristic, it isn't:Robots already have been enlisted in the fight against the virus

3.25.20 U.S. News & World Report
"Could Robots Be Deployed to Front Line in Fighting COVID-19"
Robots can provide significant help in the fight against coronavirus, experts say. Uses include: patient care such as telemedicine and decontamination; logistics such as delivery and handling contaminated waste; monitoring compliance with voluntary quarantines, etc., according to a paper published March 25 in the journal Science Robotics. "Already, we have seen robots being deployed for disinfection, delivering medications and food, measuring vital signs, and assisting border controls," the authors wrote. Henrik Christensen, Director, Contextual Robotics Inst. at UCSD, is the lead author.

3.25.20 Healthy Day
"Could Robots Be Deployed to Front Line in Fighting COVID-19?"
Robots can provide significant help in the fight against coronavirus, experts say. Their uses include: patient care such as telemedicine and decontamination; logistics such as delivery and handling contaminated waste; monitoring compliance with voluntary quarantines, and helping people maintain social connections, according to a paper published March 25 in the journal Science Robotics. Henrik Christensen, director of the Contextual Robotics Institute at the University of California, San Diego, is the lead author.

3.25.20 Independent
"Coronavirus Pandemic Could Prove 'Tipping Point' For Robots Looking After Humans, Scientists and Experts Say"
The development of robots to save lives and reduce human exposure to the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak could lead to a new era of robotic human helpers, researchers have said. Robotics professor Henrik Christensen from the University of California San Diego, was among a group of leading experts who outlined how robots could be used to combat the coronavirus pandemic by doing the "dull, dirty and dangerous" jobs.

3.25.20 ZD Net
"Roboticists: We've missed the mark for pandemic busting robots ... yet again"
We've missed the mark when it comes to funding robotics development to meet critical demands during the COVID-19 pandemic. That's the takeaway from an editorial in the journal Science Robotics today, which was signed by leading academic researchers in the field. According to the authors of the editorial, robots could easily be doing some of the "dull, dirty and dangerous" jobs associated with combating the COVID-19 pandemic, but funding and development has not been directed at the capabilities that would be most helpful.

3.25.20 Wired
"The Covid-19 Pandemic Is a Crisis That Robots Were Built For"
We humans weren't ready for the novel coronavirus--and neither were the machines. The pandemic has come at an awkward time, technologically speaking. Ever more sophisticated robots and AI are augmenting human workers, rather than replacing them entirely. While it would be nice if we could protect doctors and nurses by turning more tasks over to robots, medicine is particularly hard to automate. It's fundamentally human, requiring fine motor skills, compassion, and quick life-and-death decision-making we wouldn't want to leave to machines. But this pandemic is a unique opportunity

3.23.20 The Star
" Clouded by myths: Dispersing some common misconceptions about solar panels "
Here are answers to some of the most common misconceptions about solar panels. Solar panels need constant cleaning to work well. As the surface area of solar panels determines the amount of energy absorbed, it only makes sense to assume that it?s essential to keep the panels clean at all times. However, a team of engineers from the University of California, San Diego in the United States, reported that hiring help to clean small arrays - like those used by households - may not be cost effective.

3.20.20 Jacobs School of Engineering News
"UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering jumped to #9 in U.S. News and World Report Rankings of Best Engineering Schools"
The University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering jumped to the #9 spot in the influential U.S. News and World Report Rankings of Best Engineering Schools. This is up from #11 last year and #17 four years ago. It's the first time the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering has broken into the top 10 of this closely watched ranking. "This is not a time for a celebration because our priority right now is dealing with COVID-19. But I want to recognize the many people here at UC San Diego...," said Albert P. Pisano, Dean of the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.

3.20.20 the New York Times Science
"These Ants Have a Revolutionary Escape Strategy"
Ants are bristling with defense weaponry. Different species might sting their enemies, bite them with powerful jaws or shoot them with jets of formic acid. Some even explode. But Myrmecina graminicola -- an ant about the size of a sesame seed -- doesn't want to get into all that. According to research published last week in Scientific Reports, if one of these ants encounters danger while it's on a slope, it makes a practical choice: It tucks itself into a little ball and rolls away.

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